|Article Overview: What
do Ernest Hemmingway's Santiago from the Old Man & The Sea and Florida
Marlin 72-year-old coach, Jack McKeon, have in common?
Does the Age of Vigilance know no age? Can the old and
young combine forces to become World Champions? Find out.
26, 2003—Ground Zero Plus 774
Marlin's Spear Beast Of Terror At
Editor, New York City Combat Correspondent News
GROUND ZER0, New York, N.Y.--Oct. 26, 2003-- One of
the greatest stories of man versus nature is Ernest Hemmingway's Old
Man And The Sea.
about a old, weathered fisherman named Santiago who sets out in his
boat to catch the biggest fish, and redeem his position as a "man
among men." He seeks to stand tall in the eyes of a young boy, a
reminder to youth that age has the ability to fight for its glory just
as much as the young must.
23, shut out the Yankees
Age Terrorizes many of us as gravity and time
whittle away at our energy, our dreams, our ability to face reality
with the endless enthusiasm of youth. Hemmingway's Old Man
And The Sea was as much a book about a man battling the Beast of Age
as it was about a downtrodden, old fisherman battling one of the sea's
greatest prizes--a huge marlin.
Last night, the Yankees, a dazzling team of
top-notch baseball players whose combined salaries exceed $165
million, were shut out in the sixth game of the World Series by a
23-year-old pitcher named Josh Beckett. Beckett's manager, like
Hemmingway's "old man of the sea," was an example of 72-year-old
leadership in the battle between nature and wisdom.
The Florida Marlins combined players' salary is
about one-third that of the New York Yankees. The Yankees have
won the World Series 26 times. The Marlins only once.
The Yankees incredible winning record has been created in what is
called the "house of Babe." It was called that because
when the Yankees bought Babe Ruth from the Boston Red Sox the fans
crowded to see the great hitter. His presence justified the
building of a new stadium.
opened on April 18, 1923 and was dubbed "the house that Ruth
When Yankee Stadium opened on April 18, 1923, it was dubbed "the house
that Ruth built" because Babe Ruth drew so many fans his presence
justified the building of the stadium. The "Babe" hit a
three-run homer during the inaugural game, to help the Yankees beat
the Boston Red Sox, 4-1. He became the prime Yankee
are the Sentinels of Baseball Vigilance.....the Babe......Dimaggio......
These "Yankee ghosts" might be called
Sentinels of Baseball Vigilance--great players of the past who float
above the Bronx location of Yankee Stadium and urge the players to
"hit one for the Babe"...or for Joe Dimaggio, Mickey Mantle...or
Lou Gehrig...or any
of the countless former Yankee legends whose faces are embossed in
brass plates around the stadium.
But now, there is a new one.
(center) coached the Florida Marlins to a World Series victory
over the mighty Yankees
It is the "Old Man of the
Baseball Sea:"--Jack McKeon, the septuagenarian of modern baseball.
McKeon was playing with his grandchildren in North Carolina when he
got a call in mid-season from the Florida Marlins about coaching the
team. He is the oldest coach today's major leagues, and
third oldest in baseball history, following legends Connie Mack and
Like Hemmingway's Santiago, McKeon set out in a
turbulent sea to prove the worth of age, to remind the world that a
man or woman is as old as he or she believes.
His wisdom of life revitalized the Marlin's
youthful team, and, under his leadership, he speared the greatest of
all fish in the baseball sea--the New York Yankees.
One might liken his battle as a wild card upstart team
to that of Santiago's battle with the great marlin.
Game after game, he clung to the rope, using all his skills to steer
the team's attitude and expertise into the World Championship Circle.
with the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1949
baseball career started with the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1949 where he
played as a catcher. He managed in the minors for 15 years
hiring on with the Royals. He managed
Oakland and became the general manager of the Padres.
There he acquired the nickname of Trader Jack because of his many
deals. His career lasted until the year 2000 when the Cincinnati Reds let him go as
manager. Like Hemmingway's Santiago, he sat on the beaches
of baseball as the other fishermen went out to land their catch,
sharing his wisdom and life's experience with his grandkids.
Then he hooked onto a star.
And, he landed it.
While most sports pundits look at Jack McKeon as
an "old man of baseball," I see him as a "young man of Vigilance."
Vigilance is about facing one's Fears with
Courage, embracing one's Intimidations with Confidence, and taking
Right Actions that drive aside the mountains of Complacency that tend
to stop one from moving forward when the gravity of life bears down
and buckles one's knees.
McKeon's grandchildren learned a great
lesson from their grandfather. They learned a person can
always be a winner, no matter how old or how difficult the obstacles
that face him or her.
As America's and the world's
population ages, there is a greater and greater demand for the older,
more experienced in life to stand up to the plate and remind the youth
that Vigilance rules always over Terrorism.
While McKeon is an example of Vigilance of
Age over Terrorism of Age, his victory is ageless.
example of Vigilance of Age over the Terrorism of Age, passes on
his wisdom to the young
The young sometimes feel old.
Like a person who has spent most of his or her life seeking success,
the young often feel defeat, failure, emptiness far before their time.
The child who gives up on his or her homework because he or she feels
"stupid" or "not as smart as" needs the Jack McKeon wisdom of the
older generation to remind him or her that anything is possible if you
stick to your guns--if you refuse to let the Beast of Terror rob you
of your youth, your dreams, your ability to stand above Fear,
Intimidation or Complacency.
That's why a Parent or Grandparent or
Loved One of Vigilance is necessary today. We need to pass
on to our children, or our youthful loved ones, that the world of
Terrorism can be banished from our thoughts and deeds with the help of
Age can mean wisdom. It
can also mean Complacency and defeat. It all depends on
how willing we are to pass on our wisdom to the young, to the eager to
learn, to the children of the future.
I am both a Parent and Grandparent of
Vigilance. I owe it to my children and their children to
set an example of life and vitality, and to be willing to face my
Fears of Age, and Intimidations of Life, and Complacencies of Living
with the same zest and zeal as Santiago did in Hemmingway's Old Man &
The Sea, or Jack McKeon just exampled by winning the World Series.
You can join the Jack McKeon team.
Join the Jack
McKeon Team of Vigilance
You can be a World Series of Vigilance team
Just download the Pledge of Vigilance, and become
a Parent or Grandparent of Vigilance.
The "ghosts" of the Children's Children's
Children will be cheering for you. So will Casey Stengel and
Connie Mack. And, of course, the newest Sentinel of Vigilance,